Oxytocin increases trust in humans

  title={Oxytocin increases trust in humans},
  author={Michael Kosfeld and Markus Heinrichs and Paul J. Zak and Urs Fischbacher and Ernst Fehr},
Trust pervades human societies. Trust is indispensable in friendship, love, families and organizations, and plays a key role in economic exchange and politics. In the absence of trust among trading partners, market transactions break down. In the absence of trust in a country's institutions and leaders, political legitimacy breaks down. Much recent evidence indicates that trust contributes to economic, political and social success. Little is known, however, about the biological basis of trust… 
Testosterone decreases trust in socially naïve humans
Compared with the placebo, testosterone significantly decreases interpersonal trust, and it is suggested that testosterone adaptively increases social vigilance in these trusting individuals to better prepare them for competition over status and valued resources.
Oxytocin Facilitates Social Learning by Promoting Conformity to Trusted Individuals
It is proposed that a key role for oxytocin is not in facilitating social trust per se but in conforming to, and learning from, trusted individuals who are either in-group members and/or perceived experts.
Oxytocin-Trust Link in Oxytocin-Sensitive Participants and Those Without Autistic Traits
The results should be interpreted with caution as the effect size was not larger than the minimal detectable effect size and the results were not statistically significant (P > 0.05) after Bonferroni corrections.
U-Shaped Relation between Plasma Oxytocin Levels and Behavior in the Trust Game
It is hypothesized that baseline plasma OT is a biomarker that partially predicts the degree of trust and trustworthiness observed in the trust game, and a significant U-shaped relationship between plasma OT with the level of trust, and marginally with thelevel of trustworthiness is observed.
Does Oxytocin Increase Trust in Humans? A Critical Review of Research
It is concluded that the cumulative evidence does not provide robust convergent evidence that human trust is reliably associated with OT (or caused by it) and constructive ideas for improving the robustness and rigor of OT research are presented.
Oxytocin, Trust, and Trustworthiness: The Moderating Role of Music
Evidence has indicated that the neuroactive hormone oxytocin is essential for prosocial behavior, particularly trust. Exogenous administration of oxytocin has been shown to increase trust in humans.
Human behaviour: Brain trust
A study of nearly 200 Zurich students playing an investment game with real money has come up with a finding of startling simplicity: the hormone oxytocin increases an individual's willingness to trust someone.
On the Economics and Biology of Trust
  • E. Fehr
  • Economics
    SSRN Electronic Journal
  • 2008
Strong biological and behavioral evidence is reviewed indicating that trusting is not just a special case of risk-taking, but based on important forms of social preferences such as betrayal aversion, which opens the door for understanding national and ethnic trust differences in terms of differences in preferences and beliefs.
Is oxytocin a trust hormone? Salivary oxytocin is associated with caution but not with general trust
Studies on the association between trust and oxytocin, a neuropeptide of the central nervous system, have not reached a consensus, thereby challenging the possibility of a direct association between
Neuroeconomic Foundations of Trust and Social Preferences
This paper discusses recent neuroeconomic evidence related to other-regarding behaviors and the decision to trust in other people's other-regarding behavior. This evidence supports the view that


Status and Distrust: The Relevance of Inequality and Betrayal Aversion
Trust is related to people's willingness to accept vulnerability, composed of their willingness to accept the risk of being worse off than if they had never trusted, the risk of being worse off than
Cellular Mechanisms of Social Attachment
It is hypothesize that oxytocin and vasopressin may be facilitating affiliation and social attachment in monogamous species by modulating these reward pathways.
Oxytocin Receptor Distribution Reflects Social Organization in Monogamous and Polygamous Voles
  • L. Shapiro, T. Insel
  • Biology
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 1992
It is demonstrated that species from the genus Microtus (voles) selected for differences in social affiliation show contrasting patterns of oxytocin receptor expression in brain, and it is suggested that variable expression of the oxytocIn receptor in brain may be an important mechanism in evolution of species-typical Differences in social bonding and affiliative behavior.
Trust, Reciprocity, and Social History
Abstract We designed an experiment to study trust and reciprocity in an investment setting. This design controls for alternative explanations of behavior including repeat game reputation effects,
Does Social Capital Have an Economic Payoff? A Cross-Country Investigation
This paper presents evidence that "social capital" matters for measurable economic performance, using indicators of trust and civic norms from the World Values Surveys for a sample of 29 market
Trust, Risk and Betrayal
Using experiments, we examine whether the decision to trust a stranger in a one-shot interaction is equivalent to taking a risky bet, or if a trust decision entails an additional risk premium to
Neuroendocrine and emotional changes in the post-partum period.
As well as having widespread effects on many aspects of mammalian physiology, the hormones of both the reproductive and stress axes can directly and indirectly influence behavior. Here we review
Oxytocin Control of Maternal Behavior Regulation by Sex Steroids and Offspring Stimuli a
  • C. Pedersen
  • Biology, Psychology
    Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
  • 1997
This chapter focuses on the now overwhelming evidence that the neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) is centrally involved in activating MB at the appropriate time as well as on new evidence that OT may play a less essential but significant role in sustaining MB during lactation.